Created by This is England ’86 writer Jack Thorne, it promises to be Freaks & Geeks meets Ghostbusters … but a lot darker.
The series, which will air later this year, comprises six by 60-minutes episodes, and is a co-production with BBC America.
Iain De Caestecker (left, River City , Coronation Street ) is playing Paul, a young man haunted by apocalyptic dreams that neither his therapist or best friend and fellow geeky social outcast Mac can explain. Worse, Paul is starting to see the Fades – the spirits of the dead – all around him. They’re everywhere but they just can’t be seen, smelt, heard or touched by living beings. But now an embittered and vengeful Fade has found a way to break the barrier between the dead and the living and Paul, Mac and their friends and family are all right in the eye of the storm.
Thorne says: “ The Fades was born from a trip into executive producer, Sue Hogg’s office. She asked me what drama of the last ten years I wished I’d written. I said the American cable show Freaks & Geeks . I was wearing a Ghostbusters t-shirt, she said, ‘What about Freaks & Geeks meets Ghostbusters ’? And I smiled and nodded enthusiastically. But the further we’ve gone along – and it’s been five years since that meeting – the more seriously we’ve taken the fantasy and the mythology and so the comedy is subtler and a newer, fresher, hopefully more exciting show has emerged. I feel so lucky to be part of the team that’s bringing it to the screen. Everyone from our location manager to our FX supervisor are so committed and we have such an amazing cast. I’m quite literally in dreamland right now.”
Other members of the cast include: Daniel Kaluuya ( Skins , Psychoville , Sucker Punch ) as Mac; Tom Ellis ( Miranda , Merlin ) as Mark, a teacher under suspicion since his ex-wife Sarah went missing, feared dead; Johnny Harris ( This is England ’86 , Spartacus ) as Neil, a lone warrior against the forces of darkness, who becomes Paul’s unlikely mentor; Daniela Nardini ( This Life , A Street Car Named Desire ) as Helen, who, like Paul, has an extraordinary ability which will prove useful in the fight to save mankind; Lily Loveless ( Skins ) as Anna, Paul’s twin sister, who finds being related to someone like Paul rather annoying; Claire Rushbrook ( Ashes To Ashes ) as Meg, Paul and Anna’s mum; Theo Barklem-Biggs ( Age of Heroes , Miranda ) as PC Phillip Firth; Jenn Murray ( Day of the Triffids ) as Natalie; and Sophie Wu (Kick-Ass) as Jay.
Kate Harwood, BBC Controller Drama Series & Serials adds: “The minute I read Jack Thorne’s script I realised we were in exciting new territory. This is a vision of great imagination and I am thrilled that we have such a talented cast and that we have director Farren Blackburn and a brilliant team who can bring this vision to life…or half life!”